Critics have suggested that President Obama’s foreign policy is “feckless.” Some have argued the president is insouciant, a relative innocent, incapable of responding to the challenges that confront him. I see it somewhat differently.
Several decades ago the distinguished sociologist Daniel Bell wrote: “The real problem of [American] modernity is the problem of belief. To use an unfashionable term, it is a spiritual crisis, since the anchorages have proven illusory and old ones have become submerged. It is a situation which brings us back to nihilism, lacking a past or a future, there is only the void.”
It is customary for members of the Academy to display anti-American sentiment in the form of multi-culturalism. Rarely, however, does the critique involve the Constitution itself. There is the belief that Supreme Court Justices may have overstepped their authority or mistook various clauses. Now, Georgetown University professor, Louis Michael Seidman, goes further in raising the question of whether we should obey the Constitution at all.
The flame of anti-Zionism burns brightly at Northeastern University in Boston. On the first day of Israel Apartheid Week, Students for Justice in Palestine, a group currently on probation for violating campus policies for acts of anti-Semitism and vandalism, dispersed “evacuation” notices to students residing in the dormitories.
With Russian armed forces seizing control of the Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, President Putin has sent a loud and clear message to President Obama. In effect, Putin contends the U.S. support for the political upheaval that dislodged a Kremlin ally, means little in the face of the Russian bear clearly intent on reacquiring “the near-abroad” – those nations lost with the dismemberment of the Soviet Union.
When President Obama visited Berlin a couple of years ago he raised the prospect of an idea that circulated throughout the twentieth century: world citizenship. Eminentos such as H.G. Wells and Bertrand Russell contended that unless humanity embraced this nation, it is doomed.
At President Obama’s State of The Union Address scant attention was given to foreign policy. He did note that “the war in Afghanistan is coming to end;” but in reality the war continues. It just so happens the U.S. will be absent from it. Yet the truncated reporting on foreign policy is suggestive. Could it be there is little to report or is it more telling to suggest that there is little good news to report?
The confluence of bad news items has thrown the Turkish economy into a tailspin. Once the darling of Wall Street and a model for emerging markets, Turkey is now in the economic doldrums. Since the world downturn in 2008 Turkey has been faltering. The miracle of economic prosperity from 2002 to 2003 attributed to Premier Erdogan, now seems like a chimera.
The journalistic gunslingers have been out in full force targeting General el-Sisi and the new Egyptian constitution. This criticism, by the way, is bipartisan; it comes from the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. What it comes down to is persistent doubt that the government’s pledge to steer Egypt toward a new era of freedom and democracy after the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood is genuine.
The continued refrain from the Obama administration is that they are engaged in a struggle against inequality. This may sound good for the denizens of class warfare, but in fact, it is a claim without substance.